May 26, 2020 9:10:55 pm
The Assam government on Tuesday directed deputy commissioners to ensure adequate relief material and repair of embankments as the state braced for floods, with seven districts and nearly 2 lakh people already affected.
Heavy rain continued to lash large parts of the state, including capital Guwahati, even as the number of Covid cases increased.
According to the Regional Meteorological Centre in Guwahati, heavy rainfall is predicted in the region over the next five days.
After a meeting, state Parliamentary Affairs Minister Chandra Mohan Patowary said that ministers in charge of different districts for the supervision of Covid will oversee flood management and relief in the respective districts.
The State Disaster Management Authority said in its report that districts of Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Darrang, Nalbari, Goalpara, Dibrugarh and Tinsukia and 1.94 lakh people were affected. A total of 35 relief camps and relief distribution centres were opened and 8,971 people put into the camps as of Tuesday. Newly framed guidelines aimed at preventing outbreak of Covid in relief camps are being followed, officials said.
As of Tuesday evening, 597 people tested positive for Covid in Assam, with majority of the 528 active cases being recent returnees. Patowary said, “People coming from outside will be sent to institutional quarantine and no home quarantine will be allowed.”
State Health and Finance Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said that till 10-15 June, people will keep returning to Assam, and after that the number of returnees will decrease. “If we can hold on for about 20 more days, we can save Assam from a social spread of the virus,” he said.
Sarma added that the state government plans to restart Classes 10 and 12 soon.
IMD issues red alert
A red-colour coded weather alert has been issued for Assam and Meghalaya from May 26-28, IMD said on Tuesday, predicting very heavy rainfall in these two northeastern states. Sathi Devi, head of IMD’s national weather forecasting centre, said there is a strong flow of south-westerly winds from Bay of Bengal, bringing a lot of moisture to these two states. This is aided by orographic factors that will bring very heavy rainfall, she added. “Red-colour coded warning has been issued to Assam and Meghalaya for the next three days,” IMD Director General Mrurunjay Mohapatra said.
(With input from PTI)
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